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RileyEW Offline
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My friend has abusive and negligent parents and siblings and I want to help, but I知 not sure how - July 20th 2019, 12:16 AM

A friend of mine has terrible parents. Honestly, her whole family can eat a bag of- nevermind I知 trying to be as cool headed as I can. Her dad yells and smokes, her mom acts like an angel in public then does a 180 at her house, and both her older and younger siblings bully and manipulate her. They abuse her in all ways except physical, and she doesn稚 trust anyone in real life because she has convinced herself, with the help of her parents, that no one will believe her. I don稚 know everything, but I know they brush her depression and low self esteem under the rug and punish her for it because they say it痴 屠ust a phase

I don稚 know her in real life yet, or even if she痴 in the same state as me, and I know that sounds terrible, but she trusts me more than she trusts her own parents and I want to protect her. She痴 too young to be emancipated, and I turn 18 next year, which already might be too long. I don稚 know if there痴 any family she could go to, or if she壇 fall into the same situation as before. I know that this sounds crazy, but I genuinely care about this kid and I want her to stay alive, and the longer she stays with those people the more her mental health and stability spiral. She痴 made threats of suicide before, and before you say she could just be an attention seeker, she literally has no one in her life that she trusts. That痴 how bad it is. Her parents won稚 let her see a therapist (because of the whole 鍍hinking it痴 a phase thing) If the rest of her family is just as bad, is it possible for me to be her legal guardian, or is it simply impossible?
I know that this might be a bad Idea. Hell, I知 still practically a kid myself, but I don稚 know how much longer she can go in that household and I seem to be the only person in her life who is trying to help her. Criticism and all that are welcome, but I just want to get her out of there. I致e given her a list of CPS numbers and I pray to whatever痴 up there that she reports them. I値l just be happy to see her get the hell out of that abusive environment.
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Celyn Offline
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Re: My friend has abusive and negligent parents and siblings and I want to help, but I知 not sure how - July 24th 2019, 06:55 PM

Hey there and welcome to TeenHelp!

It's really touching that you want to help your friend so much and I understand that it must be really difficult for you, hearing about your friend's life and feeling powerless to do much.

It's quite common for people who have been abused to worry about not being taken seriously if they speak up. If the abuse is still on going, is there a way she can collect evidence? Perhaps record what's going on? At least this way she will have proof and won't have to worry about not being taken seriously. And unfortunately, even well meaning parents, may think that depression and low self-esteem is just a 'teenage phase'. But it's important that your friend reaches out for help and talks to someone that she trusts or who she should be able to trust e.g. a family member she gets on well with, a friend, a teacher, a counsellor etc.

We aren't professionals so we can't say for sure whether it would be possible to be her legal guardian. If your friend isn't safe at home then she should either talk to someone who has a duty to report e.g. a teacher, or she should call 2-1-1 http://www.211.org/ to see if they can offer support. If she feels suicidal then she should go to the nearest ER or talk to a hotline such as crisis text line https://www.crisistextline.org/

It's really good that you have given her a list of CPS numbers and I hope that she takes the next step and reports the abuse. Try not to get too caught up in the situation though. If you don't know her in real life then it can be difficult to know what's really going on. I'm not saying she is attention seeking but you don't want to get caught up in trouble when you only have good intentions of wanting to help. Equally, listening to someone talk about the abuse they are going through as well as supporting them through feeling suicidal, it can take it's toll on you. Make sure you are looking after yourself and getting support for yourself too

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